COLORADO SPRINGS — This Colorado Springs school is changing a stigma.
“The accusation of they’re being lazy, of they’re being dumb, of them not working hard enough. Those kinds of things they’ve had to overcome,” said Teresa Hinote, a dyslexia therapist at the Academy For Literacy Learning And Innovation Excellence.
They’re targeting dyslexia and offering resources that would otherwise cost parents thousands of dollars, for free.
“Now we have parents that are calling us from probably about six different surrounding districts. Even from places as far away as Germany,” said Rebecca Thompson, director for ALLIES.
Allies now has a student population of 121 students, and it’s been building back confidence in students grades second through fifth, for the past three years.
“They need a prescription and this is the prescription. It’s an educational medication for this particular reading difference,” Hinote said.
Every student has a dyslexia diagnosis or characteristics and needs extra help with reading, spelling, math, and writing.
“Letter, sound representation is not there for them,” Hinote said.
To better cater to these kids, the D-49 school has professors trained specifically in dyslexia, anxiety, and behavioral disorders such as ADD and ADHD.
To improve their reading, ALLIES has a certified academic language therapist teaching their Take Flight classes.
“These kids can learn to read, they just need the rules to the game. And this class provides the rules to the game,” Hinote said.
And every student has an ipad.
“It allows for many accommodations. It allows for text to speech, speech to text, spelling support, support of actually adding all of their leaning on to the iPad, so that parents can see what they’re doing during the day, as well as lots of goal setting on the iPad,” Thompson said.
ALLIES says the need for a dyslexia based school was always there..
More parents are just finding out about it.
“These kids are bright, intelligent kids. They’ve had great instruction, had attended school, and they just struggle to read,” Hinote said.